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National training scheme introduced by the UK Association for Specialist Fire Protection
Published:  14 July, 2014

New passive fire protection awareness training programme is designed to up-skill the supply chain involved in the installation of passive fire protection and to improve the knowledge base of those involved in the design, supply, inspection and maintenance of passive fire protection.

With support from the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB), the Association for Specialist Fire Protection (ASFP) has been working with its key training partner, the Fire Protection Association, to develop the course structure and deliver a pilot scheme, which is now to be rolled out nationally.

The course offers a core module followed by a range of specialist pathway programmes. The core module will introduce general fire safety concepts, explaining the need for a holistic approach to fire safety in which all types of fire protection system have a role to play. It will then consider issues such as the legal, standard and other code driven requirements for passive fire protection installations; the role of passive protection in ensuring the safety of buildings and occupants; responsibilities of those involved in the process including the designer, specifier, distributor, installer, end user and enforcement officer. It will examine common issues caused by building alterations, as well as presenting potential solutions.

The supporting specialist pathway modules will be more practically-focused and will cover functional areas such as: intumescent coatings; non-reactive coatings; cavity barriers; dry cladding; fire resisting ductwork; fire resisting timber doors; fire resisting glazing; and fire stopping.

The special launch event provided a detailed introduction to the aims and structure of the course, and included presentations from ASFP CEO Wilf Butcher, Martin Driver  of CITB, the FPA’s Steve Skaratt and Chris Barlow who chaired the industry steering group which developed the course vision.

Commenting on the new scheme ASFP CEO Wilf Butcher declared:  “The scheme is being developed in response to wide recognition of an identifiable under-skilling in passive fire protection within the construction industry workforce, often as a result of PFP being installed as a secondary process by non-specialists.

“The new training scheme aims to significantly improve overall standards of PFP installation. It will enable an up-skilling of the existing workforce by creating a recognised and measurable industry benchmark.”

For more information visit www.asfp.org.uk

Best Practice Guide for Passive Fire Protection

The Association for Specialist Fire Protection (ASFP) has also unveiled the 2nd edition of its popular Best Practice Guide.

The Guide to Ensuring Best Practice for Passive Fire Protection in Buildings contains comprehensive information about the installation, specification, commissioning and purchasing of passive fire protection. The new document offers advice in a fresh, easy-to-read format, with recommendations clearly highlighted within the text and summarised at the end of each section. 

The Guide explains the vital role of passive fire protection in making buildings safe when fire occurs; by ensuring the building does not collapse and by subdividing it to prevent the spread of smoke and fire. It sets out ways in which the process of design, installation and maintenance of passive fire protection should be undertaken to ensure the installed systems will behave as expected should fire break out.

This latest edition, has been updated to reflect changes in legislation, including the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 and its national equivalents and changes in standards and codes of practice for fire safety in buildings e.g. BS 7974, BS 9999 and BS 9991. It also now also covers legislation within the Republic of Ireland.

The Guide defines the roles and responsibilities of professionals with responsibility for the fire safety of a building throughout its lifecycle, from design, through to occupation. It includes advice for the client/developer, designers, main and specialist contractors, manufacturers, suppliers, regulators and enforcers, as well as the building occupier.

Three major sections offer in-depth guidance on designing for passive fire protection; constructing, supplying and installing passive fire protection products; and maintaining passive fire protection. Emphasis is placed on the need to ensure the competency of all those involved in the construction process, with the use of third party certificated products and installers recommended. The Guide explains that this involves a third party validating the performance of the product as manufactured and the skills and experience of the installer, offering the best guarantee that the passive fire protection, as installed will work as intended.

The A4 Guide is available in hard copy format for £25 plus postage. It is also is available for free download from here.